Sunday, 30 December 2007

Albums of 2007: The Notable Mentions

OK, so I said before posting my top 10 that I'd list the notable mentions for 2007 .. and here they are. I've listed these in alphabetical order so no real relativity involved ... just a list of great albums that didn’t make the top 10 for one reason or another.

  • Albert Hammond Jr: "Yours to Keep"
  • Band of Horses: "Cease to Begin"
  • Beastie Boys: "The Mix Up"
  • Biffy Clyro: "Puzzle"
  • Bright Eyes: "Cassadaga"
  • Black Rebel Motorcycle Club: "Baby 81"
  • Calla: "Strength in Numbers"
  • The Cult: "Born In To This"
  • Editors: "An End Has a Start"
  • The Fall: "Reformation Post TLC"
  • Foo Fighters: "Echoes , Silence, Patience and Grace"
  • The Good, the Bad & the Queen: "The Good, the Bad & the Queen"
  • The Go Team: "Proof of Youth"
  • Ian Brown: "The World is Yours"
  • Idlewild: "Make a New World"
  • Jimmy Eat World: "Chase the Light"
  • Kings of Leon "Because of the Times"
    LCD Soundsystem: "Sound of Silver"
  • Malcolm Middleton: "A Brighter Beat"
  • New Young Pony Club: "Fantastic Playroom"
  • The Primary 5: "Go!"
  • Public Enemy: "How to Sell Soul …."
  • Reverend & the Makers: "The State of Things"
  • Shocking Pinks: "Shocking Pinks"
  • Thurston Moore: "Trees Outside the Academy"
  • The Twilight Sad, "Fourteen Autumns & Fifteen Winters"
  • The View: "Hats Off to the Buskers"

    Two of the standouts from here that coulda, shoulda, nearly made the top ten are both Scots bands, namely The Twilight Sad and The Primary 5.

    And finally ...

    Many, most, both of you will disagree with some or all of my top 10 or notable mention choices ... all I can say is go and write your own blog !!!!

Tuesday, 25 December 2007

Albums of 2007: #1

Radiohead – “In Rainbows”

There can’t be anyone alive today that hasn’t heard that Radiohead have released an album in 2007 … “In Rainbows” hit the headlines big time thanks to the unique way that the band initially released it via download only and asked those downloading to decide how much they were willing to pay. For the record, I paid £3.50 for my download !!! When you analyse what the band did, it was genius … traditionally a band will release early copies of their recordings to journalists etc to review in order to generate publicity.

In recent years however this has provided the opportunity for people to “leak” the recordings on the internet therefore negatively affecting sales on release. Radiohead appear to have cut out the middle man by generating the publicity in other ways and, by all accounts, generate significant revenue by officially leaking the recording … brilliant! Add to that the fact that “In Rainbows” has also been released in a collectors edition and will hit the shops as a traditional CD around the 1st of January 2008.

It appears though that the publicity of the release mechanism has overshadowed the content of “In Rainbows” … which is a great pity as this is a phenomenal album. Not since “OK Computer” have Radiohead released such an accomplished piece of work. This isn’t to say that the intervening years have been crap, nothing could be further from the truth , however “Kid A”, “Amnesiac” and “Hail to the Thief” have not been quite up to the standard that “OK Computer” set … nothing much since has mind you!

“In Rainbows” kicks off with “15 Steps” which is leads you to believe this may be another freaked out electronica show … but once the guitars kick in its 100% old school. “Bodysnatchers” is just brilliant and has that classic change of direction half way through that even hits you after dozens of listens.

“Nude” is the first of the beautiful tracks here … if your not chilled after listening to this then you need to cut down on the coffee (or equivalent!!). I’m sure the band have been listening to Mogwai’s “Black Spider”, the subtle guitar backing here has the same undertones.

“Weird Fishes / Arpeggi” is classic head Thom Yorke head shaking material, follwed by the down beat but haunting “All I Need”.

For me, “Faust Arp” is a tad weak but works well to set up the stunning classic that is “Reckoner”. Thom’s voice reaches Anthony & the Johnsons levels here and to great effect.

“House of Cards” slows things down a bit and then “Jigsaw Falling into Place” hits you as the stand out track on first listen … its has legs too, it won’t always be your stand out track but you’ll never tire of listening to it.

“Videotape” is a sedate closer but in context works just fine … and then you listen to it all over again!

Those with the second disc from the box set will also know just how good tracks like “Down is the New Up”, “Go Slowly”, “Up on the Ladder” and “4 Minute Warning” are and admittedly all in the same vein as the first and main disc. The problem child in this bonus set is “Bangers & Mash” which stands out in all the right ways.

“In Rainbows” deserves to be listened to time and again, each time you do your view of it changes … never in a bad way … this is classic stuff, I just hope the release hype dies down and the world wakes up to the fact be have a seminal album here.

Hail to the ‘head !!!

Monday, 24 December 2007

Albums of 2007: #2

The Raveonettes - "Lust, Lust, Lust"


The Raveonettes have two main sounds:


· a dark minor chord based sound that wouldn’t be out of place in spaghetti westerns or grind house b-movies … with Jesus & Mary Chain styleee heavy distortion, feedback and general noise


· a mix of 50s / 60s bubble gum pop and Glaswegian indie pop … with Jesus & Mary Chain styleee heavy distortion, feedback and general noise !!!


On previous albums (”Lust, Lust, Lust” being their fourth) they have tended to stick with one of these styles for the entire set, here they move between them and sometimes combine them to great effect.


Its clear that Surin and Sharin have found a couple of effects for their Fenders that they like and their damn well gonna use them as much as they can here. Opener “Aly, Walk With Me” is as dark as they come and appears to set the scene for a downbeat album. “Hallucinations” introduces the pop sound and the Mary Chain noise feedback and its clear this is going to be a style clash rollercoaster.


“Lust” is a classic example of how a simple drumbeat, simple chords and an effective lead guitar break can sound stunning, especially when accompanied by subtle harmonies and a haunting melody. This style is used on several of the tracks here and most notably on the beautiful “Black Satin” that follows the more upbeat “Dead Sound”.


The musical rollercoaster is most evident in the trio of tracks led by the noise pop fest that is "Blush" followed by the eternally dark but stunningly simple “Expelled From Love”. The trio is complete by the pop cheesefest that is “You Want The Candy”.


The upbeat “Blitzed” and “Sad Transmission” lead you to believe that Danes are going to keep the popfest going to the end and just when your head starts to bop along like an extra from “Grease”, the haunting “With My Eyes Closed” brings things back to earth.


Despite the upbeat pop tunes here, The Raveonettes are essentially a dark, minor chord outfit and fittingly, close the album with the sad and reflective “The Best Dies”, anything else would have missed the point.


Although the band, and this album, is a fusion of so many different influences, this is simple but beautifully structured stuff … its also an indie noise fest when the mood suits. Its not a mass appeal record, but those who are fans of the various influences will get it and understand why its so high in this list.

Saturday, 22 December 2007

Albums of 2007: #3

The Shins - "Wincing the Night Away"
From the moment in the film "Garden State" when Natalie Portman handed her huge headphones to Zach Braff and told him that The Shins would change his life, to be followed by the soundtrack blasting "New Slang" ... The Shins had me hooked.

"Wincing The Night Away" is, by far, the most accomplished output from the band to date with every single track being of the highest quality and having the potential to change someone's life as "New Slang" had done for Portman's character.

The subtle openings of "Sleeping Lessons" disguise the pace and tone to come but once it springs to life, the album just keeps on going churning out cracker after cracker !

After "Australia" you get the feeling that the album may have peaked a tad early but then the teasing snippet "Pam Berry" tees up the track of 2007 in "Phantom Limb". This is song writing at its best and was probably the soundtrack for many people's summer of 2007.

The album keeps going with one quality track after another, never repetitive and none with skip potential for the iPod brigade.

For those who haven't yet embraced The Shins, close your eyes, imagine Natalie Portman handing you some huge headphones and telling you this will change your life … Enjoy.

Friday, 21 December 2007

Albums of 2007: #4

Smashing Pumpkins - "Zeitgeist"
Billy's back ...
There may have been Zwan and the solo album but Billy Corgan is Smashing Pumpkins and "Zeitgeist" is a welcome return for the angry wee man who appears to be falling out of love with his homeland ...

"Zeitgeist" is Billy Corgan's call to arms for the American people to wake up and realise what's going on in the world in the name of the war on terror and the deflection from the domestic problems of the good ole US of A. For the average European who is used to the "f**k the system attitude" of most alternative & punk bands for the past 30 years, this all sounds a bit tame ... but lets not forget that American's publicly questioning their position in the world is about as popular as a bag on your hip !!!

Musically, this is a classic rock album and retains the classic Pumpkins washed out guitars and precise drumming sound ... only Corgan and Jimmy Chamberlin (drums) remain from the original line up but its the voice and the drums that define the Smashing Pumkins so, business as usual then.

"That's the Way (My Love Is)" sounds like the output of Corgan's first post Pumpkins project Zwan and shows he's still a softy at heart ... don't tell him I said that mind !!!

"Tarantula" delivers the definitive track on the album, no surprise it was the first single released ... Its only trumped by the 10 minute classic "United States" that appears to sum up Corgan's view of his motherland both lyrically and musically ... this is a monster of a track that conveys the political anger that only Rage Against the Machine can top.

Many will say that Corgan only reformed the Pumpkins because the solo work was bombing but Corgan has admitted that he feels musically devoid when he's not working in a Smashing Pumpkins project, regardless of who's working with him.

But who cares what Corgan calls his projects, if they keep sounding like this then its win-win all over.

Albums of 2007: #5

Manic Street Preachers - "Send Away the Tigers"

I was recently asked where I though the Manics ranked in the great scheme of things ... difficult one as these guys are pretty much taken for granted, or ignored, by the masses ... but this once important band haven't gone away, on the contrary it appears the Manics are back.

The question of where the Manics ranked came seconds before their gig at the Music Hall in Aberdeen in December 2007, this was a gig that was one of the years best (and its one hell of a year gig wise !!!) and portrayed the band in the genius light they belong. Spookily, weeks later, the NME have announced that the band will be awarded the God Like Genius award in early 2008 ... nice to hear they agree with me !!!

Now, the album ...

Tha Manics have been making great music for years but, in my opinion, haven't made a great album since "Everything Must Go" ... "Send Away the Tigers", wait for it, possibly trumps even that and stands as one of the finest bodies of work produced by the band post Ritchie.

The album is full of anthemic rock tracks without a dodgy one in sight ... "Underdog" is a song for the fans " ... this one's for the freaks ... " starts James as he sets out to make the points that being different ain't a bad thing ... ist hasn't done Nikki any harm after all !!

The duet with Nina Persson on "Your Love is Not Enough" evokes memories of the classic "Little Baby Nothing" with Tracey Lords' vocals.

This an album full of potential classics while retaining James' obtuse lyrical edge. This will be number one on many people's list for 2007, and so it should be ... there are days when its mine, I may regret it yet ...

Albums of 2007: #6


Babyshambles - "Shotter's Nation"

The old adage states that Pete Doherty is a Marmite man, you either love him or hate him ... and the majority of people who hate him appear to do so based on the newspaper headlines and his public lifestyle ... two points to make here:

- its not the man that should count, its the music !!!

- what are people basing their opinion on? The drugs? Thank Christ the Beatles and the Stones ain't trying to cut it these days then eh?

In my opinion, the Libertines were never given the recognition and respect they deserved ... Arctic Monkeys et al have a lot to thank them for I suspect.

Lets face it though, Babyshambles' first offering "Down in Albion" was patchy at best ... things didn't look good for post-Libertines Pete.

"Shotters Nation" is a different story all together, this is as good as any off The Libertines' output and appears to have been largely under recognised.

The opening "Carry on up the Morning" is classic, self deprecating Pete ... "its wasn't easy, getting out of my bed ... its too easy, getting out of my head ... " is the "look, I know I'm f**ked up" marker in the sand.

The single, "Delivery" follows and turns out to be one of the weaker tracks here and is followed by the superb Libertinesque "You Talk".

"Unbilotitled" is as deep and personal as things can get for someone who's life is as public as Pete's "... you said that you loved me, why don't you f**k off, anyone would think you were only ripping me off ... " Many of his so called friends are dismantled here, some named, others obvious.

More Libertine stylee tunes follow in the guise of "French Dog Blues" and the storming "Baddie's Boogie" ... in between these is the beautiful "There She Goes".

Things are closed off with the introspective "Lost Art of Murder".

Marmite aside, there can be no argument that this is a brilliant album, not just good, brilliant ... you might not like it (even those who have actually listed to it) but its quality cannot be denied.
I bet if any of these is going to get a comment ... its this one !!!

Albums of 2007: #7

Dinosaur Jr. - "Beyond"

J Mascis, Lou Barlow and Murph back together again ... so is this in my top 10 for nostalgic reasons? No chance! It may be almost 20 years since the original line recorded "Bug" but "Beyond" probably eclipses all previous work by the band.

Kicking off with "Almost Ready" and keeping the pace up through "Crumble" and "Pick Me Up", its clear that this is going to be good ... the play out on "Pick Me Up" will make you want to pick up any guitar shaped object and stand in front of a mirror pulling those grunge faces ..... just me then ????!!!!!!

Things don't lighten up til "Were Not Alone" and then chill out totally on "I Got Lost".

"Lightening Bulb" picks things back up again and the closer "What If I Knew" just makes you want to listen to the whole thing again.

"Beyond" revisits grunge in an intelligent and contemporary way ... the world needs another J. Mascis ... any signs ????

Albums of 2007: #8

Interpol - "Our Love to Admire"

Recommending Interpol to someone is hard ... their dark, monotonic, down beat sound is a difficult sell (like trying to cheer someone up with a Joy division album) ... but this, their third, release is just an incredible body of work that deserves to be heard by everyone who appreciates "serious" music.

Opening "Pioneer to the Falls" is about as bleak as it gets but, in its own way, is as rousing and anthemic a track as they come ....

"No I in Threesome" presents a listening dichotomy, is this a tongue in cheek send up structured to sound dark, or is Paul Banks opening his heart on a struggling relationship? Whatever it is, it works as one of the stand out tracks here.

Things get as upbeat as it comes on "The Heinrich Manoeuvre", the first single release from the album ... and when followed by "Mammoth" suggests that things are looking more cheery ... but "Pace if the Trick" brings things back to the dark side where Interpol are most at home.

Things continue on the dark side for the remainder of the album and conclude with the stunningly bleak "The Lighthouse" which has the same overtones as Radiohead's "Motion Picture Soundtrack" from Kid A.

"Our Love to Admire" is another example of an album that isn't instant, even for Interpol fans, it needs several listens while in the correct frame of mind but, for me, is probably Interpol's finest work to date.

Albums of 2007: #9

Explosions in the Sky - "All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone"

No top 10 is complete without a slice of post-rock genius. Although Mogwai did release a soundtrack album in 2007 for the Zidane film, I didn't class it as a true Mogwai release and its therefore not in this years list ...

So the post-rock release of the year for me is this incredible piece of work by Explosions in the Sky. I still have vivid memories of lying by the pool in Florida this year with this constantly repeating on the iPod. Fans of the post-rock genre will love this from first listen, others may have to work a bit harder to appreciate the genius of the track structures and the lack of vocals.

Track names tend to be largely superfluous with this type of album but stand outs include the opening "The Birth and Death of the Day" (a perfect title for the quiet, quiet, loud, loud, quiet structure) and the eminently chilled "What Do You Go Home To?"

For the Mogwai, Godspeed You Black Emperor and 65daysofstatic fans out there ... this is a must listen to .... just make sure your chilled out with your eyes closed when you do !!!

Albums of 2007: #10

Arctic Monkeys - "Favourite Worst Nightmare"

Coming quick on the heels of the debut "Whatever You Say I Am ... " it was feared that the Arctic Monkeys' had jumped the gun a bit by releasing another album so soon and on the first few listens, this sounded a tad weak.

After letting this grow on you for a while though and its clear that Alex Turners song writing genius continues, supported by a tight band on a mission.

The beauty of "Favourite Worst Nightmare" is that your favourite track never seems to be the same on consecutive listens. Kicking off with the first single "Brianstorm", followed by "Teddy Picker" sets a hell of a pace that doesn't let up until the half-time whistle signalled by "Only One Who Knows".

The second half kicks off with one of the slow burners, and my favourite track on the album "Do Me a Favour" and the whole thing wrapped up with the sublime "505".

I heard many people say that this was a disappointment after the first album but this needs some work and patience like all great albums.

Stick with it, its a blinder !!!

Albums of 2007

Instead of just emailing a dull list of my favourite albums of the year (or trying to remember them while pished like I normally do !!!) I'm going to list my top 10 in reverse order in the next few posts.

I'm aware that the reverse order bit is a bit naff but, hey, if you can't be naff on your own blogsite at crimbo time, just when can you be naff?

I'll list my numerous notable mentions after the number one ... just to add to the general levels of naffness !!!!

Intelligent debate on the relative merits of my choices would be welcomed .... but I won't hold my breath !!!!

Cue the Top of the Pops theme tune ....

Monday, 19 November 2007

Long Time, Nae Post ….

As usual with stuff like Bebo, there’s an initial enthusiasm, lots of activity and then things kinda dry up … it was my enthusiasm that dried up, not the lack of things to post about !!!!

I’m not going to fill in all the blanks from the past few months (who cares?, Ed.) … but to summarise the musical highlights I’ve not posted about:

Connect Festival:

Fantastic … aside from the mud, the walk from the car park to the camp site, the mud, the excessive alcohol and, er, the mud !!!

Stormin sets included The Jesus & Mary Chain, Beastie Boys, Mogwai, Echo & the Bunnymen, Teenage Fanclub, Rio Kiley, CSS and Aereogramme’s last ever set.

They say The Cure and My Bloody Valentine for next year ….. what Mud ????

Ian Brown @ Caird Hall, Dundee:

He can’t sing ... he can’t … but he’s Ian Brown … great gig !!!

The Wedding Present @ Fubar, Stirling:

The best band in the history of the world tour again and this time celabrate 20 years since the release of their George Best album. Mid set, they played “George Best” all the way through … ah the memories !!!

The Fratellis @ AECC, Aberdeen:

Average ….

The Foo Fighters @ AECC, Aberdeen:

Gig of the year so far, Grohl’s a showman alright … and I think he genuinly enjoyed himself !!!

Planned gigs for the rest of 2007:

  • Kings of Leon @ AECC, Aberdeen
  • Manic Street Preachers at The Music Hall, Aberdeen
  • Ian Brown @ AECC, Aberdeen

Those are 3 nights in a row !!!!

Then Arctic Monkeys AECC, Aberdeen on 14 AND 15 December !!!!

Monday, 27 August 2007

4 sleeps til connect ....

The line ups just about finalised and the weather looks promising ... tent's bought and trial erected (fnarr !) ... 6 man tent for two of us including 2 separate internal domes and a beer stash communal area in the middle.

I went all sensible yesterday and bought waterproof & thermal socks (twenty five bleedin' quid ), some gators and a battery LED lantern ... I'm sorted !

Heading to Livingston to kip with Tony on Thursday night (a few practice beers nae doubt) and then head to Inverary first thing Friday to get the tent set up and meet up with Stephen C.

Must see bands so far:

Friday

  • The Aliens
  • Aereogramme (last ever gig)
  • Jesus & Mary Chain
  • Beastie Boys

Saturday

  • Rilo Kiley
  • The Only Ones
  • The Hold Steady
  • Teenage Fanclub
  • Mogwai
  • Modest Mouse

Sunday

  • Patrick Wolf
  • Aqualung
  • Tilly and the Wall
  • M.I.A.
  • Paul Hartnoll
  • LCD Soundsystem
  • Idlewild

+ the bonus of the midnight to 2am DJ sets by Mogwai on Friday and Mani from Primal Scream on Saturday.

Add to that the setting, the specialist beer / wine / whiskey / cider tents and the fact I'm off work on Monday & Tuesday and I reckon this will be a good one.

Now if Red Star can win tomorrow and the 'tic on Wednesday then there will be proof indeed that Carlsberg do last weeks in August ...

Friday, 15 June 2007

Hollibags '07 USA - The Story So Far ...

Now, don't start with all that "why's the saddo writing to his blog when he's on holiday ??" nonsense ... the truth is, its 30 odd degrees outside, I've just eaten a huge (even by Yank standards) sandwich and I needed the respite in this air conditioned haven ... its was either write to the blog or sleep !!

We traveled down to Florida from New York yesterday and I had my first ever drive on the right experience to get us from Tampa airport to Bradenton ... yip, I know I must have led a sheltered life having gotten this old without having to drive on the right but I'm not too proud to admit it ... thanks to the trusty TomTom we arrived with no problems and made straight for the local fat bastard steak house and then the supermarket for lashings of Sam Adams lager and cheap wine ... then back to the villa to catch the premier of the new season of Rescue Me on FX.

New York was as mental as ever ... on our last visit in 2004 I discovered John’s Pizza on 45th and 7th which was, bare none, the best pizza ever ... this time round, not only did we go back but we went back twice ... those visits, plus Carmines and Virgils means that I'll need to be in the gym every night for the rest of the summer just to get back down to moderately overweight

When we were in Virgils (just off Times Square) Nicola spotted Ian Brown walking in with his entourage ... after calming down from the excitement of being in the presence of a legend, I went up to say hello and ask if I could get a photo with him once he'd finished his meal ... on his way out, he stopped by the table, had a chat and Nicola took the photo you can see in the New York 2007 photo album Turns out he's in NYC mixing his new album. I pulled him up on not playing Aberdeen on his current tour but he tells me they have a date at the AECC lined up for December its just not announced yet ... you heard it here first !!

I thought the hollibags couldn't get much more eventful that that but today, we were in the Publix supermarket in Bradenton topping up the Sam Adams lager and cheap wine stocks when I was asked for ID to prove I was over 21 !!!

We went to a Broadway show on the last night in NYC (The Pirate Queen) which cost us $111 a ticket !!! Even worse, we were all so knackered I think most of us had forty winks in the second half !!!

My next update to the hollibags blog will no doubt read something along the lines of "eat food, drank beer and wine, vegged, got burnt ..." So don't wait up ...

:-)

Monday, 14 May 2007

It was a long weekend, a drab 2-1 win for Celtic over the team supported by Neil Lennon's favorite Ovis Aries worriers (not quite his words, but you get the drift ) ... much wine on Saturday evening and a few beers in the Edinburgh pubs watching the climax (it wasn't that good though !) of the English tediumship ...

Not many ways better to finish off such a weekend that catching Mogwai live ... those who haven't yet witnessed the Mogwai live phenomenon (I told you I'd be OTT ) can only but imagine the juxtaposition of ear bleeding noise and geniusly structured pieces of post-rock subtlety (are you reading this NME boys ???!!!!)

This was my first visit to The Liquid Rooms and was well surprised at how compact the place was ... this was going to be loud !!!

Support was by The Magnificents who appear to be a strange fusion of Joy Division, Talking Heads and some modern day electronica (see LCD Soundsystem et al).

The Mogwai set was flawless and included "Superheroes of BMX", "Friends of the Night", the best rendition of "Ratts of the Capital" I've ever heard and a storming version of “Ex-Cowboy”.

Bang in the middle of all this we were introduced to Aiden Moffat (formally of Arab Strap and now L. Pierre) who provided vocals for "R U Still in 2 It?".

An encore of "Glasgow Mega Snake" followed by "We're No Here" and then the obligatory 15 minutes of noise rounded off a superb set.

Nae "Auto Rock" Stephen ... you’re gonna have to get that Connect ticket after all !!!

Saturday, 12 May 2007

Aereogramme Split Up ...

Maybe its something I said earlier ???!!!

Anyone going to see Biffy Clyro should make sure they get along early to see Aereogramme's final shows ... see what you've missed !!!

From nme.com:

Aereogramme split up

The Scots post-rockers call it a dayScottish rockers Aereogramme have split up, citing "the never-ending financial struggle coupled with an almost superhuman ability to dodge the zeitgeist" as their reasons.

The band, signed to Glasgow's influential Chemikal Underground label (sometime home of Mogwai and The Delgados), had only just returned to the public eye in January of this year after a four-year absence with their fourth album 'My Heart Has A Wish That You Would Not Go', which received largely positive reviews.

In a statement posted on their MySpace site last Friday (May 9), the band said:

"It is with heavy hearts that we tell you all that Aereogramme have decided to split up. Reasons are multiple and complex. It is however fair to say that the never-ending financial struggle coupled with an almost superhuman ability to dodge the zeitgeist have taken their toll, ensuring that we just don't have any fight left in us. We are immensely proud of the four albums that we made over the past seven years. We hope that they continue to grow in your hearts. We plan to honour and celebrate the beautiful friendships we have made along the way with (our) final shows over the summer.

"We would like you all to consider our headline show at the QMU in Glasgow to be our farewell UK show and to view the Connect Festival in Inverary as a damn fine opportunity for everyone to see The Jesus And Mary Chain. Finally we want to thank you all for listening to our music and coming to our shows over the years. You have given us a glimpse of something truly special. Aereogramme. x."

Aereogramme's final shows are:

Aberdeen Music Hall (May 30)
Edinburgh Potterow (31)
Glasgow Barrowlands (June 1)
Glasgow QMU (16)
Scheesel Hurricane Festival (23)
Neuhausen Southside Festival (24)
Grossefehn Omas Teich Festival (July 27)
Inverary Connect Festival (August 31)

Thursday, 10 May 2007

Gig Review: The Lemonheads @ The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen - Wednesday 9 May 2007

It takes a brave band, or Evan Dando, to let a stormin' support act go on before you ... Evan allowed The Icarus Line to play before The Lemonheads on Wednesday and some tube reporter from the Evening Express had the audacity to print that they over-shadowed Even et al ... mate, yer maw !!!

Those who consider Evan a god .. just me then ???? ... expected some blaze of glory entrance on the night but we got some shy, retiring gadgy in a hat wandering on stage with the acoustic while the warm up tape was still playing ... "hey, I'm .. eh ... good to be here" is not the opening words that were expected !!!

A solo, acoustic offering of "Hard Drive" from his solo album opened the night and we felt that a quiet set was to come ... nope, the rest of the band joined after that and we were promised a set of "country, rock 'n' roll, emo & punk rock ... " and that's what we got ... after some impromptu George Bush piss taking !!

The set was mainly taken from "Its a Shame About Ray", "Come on Feel ... " and the new, stunning, eponymous album .. there was some stuff from "Car Button, Cloth" too but the less said about that the better ("The Outdoor Type" aside).

The band trooped off around 11:45 and left Evan to run through some acoustic stuff that included a genius, instant reaction to a crowd request for "Big Gay Heart" ... at around 11:55 he announced that he was being pulled and that "there must be some disco going on or something ... ", no Evan, its Wednesday, midnight and the crowd all need their bed coz their 30 something professionals, not the wide eyed, drug fuelled indie kids of the late 80's your used to !!!

The band came back on for a quick blast of "Rudderless" and then it was over ... brilliant it was, utterly brilliant

... and no "Mrs Robinson" ... thank Christ for credibility maintenance :-)

Wednesday, 9 May 2007

Its Lemonheads Day !!!

Once in a while Aberdeen gets to host bands of legend status ...

2007 has already seen The Fall at The Tunnels for two nights in a row.

Tonight, we get to see The Lemonheads at, you've guesssed it, The Lemon Tree !!! ... once more for the cheap seats ... ITS THE LEMONHEADS @ THE LEMON TREE !!!

I'll no doubt write a dodgy review later tonight / tomorrow ...

Saturday, 5 May 2007

Gig Review: Aereogramme @ The Tunnels, Aberdeen - Friday 4 May 2007

Just got into Aereogramme in the last few months and realised they were playing Aberdeen soon ... that flies in the face of my usual experiences of just getting into a band the week after they play a gig I can actually get to !!!

I had two great fears for this gig:

1) that no-one would come with me !! and

2) they might actually be shite live !!!!

Thank's to Eric's willingness to take a risk (and the fact that Sarah was probably actually already booked to go out that night !!! ... he came along to address fear 1).

Fear 2) was also blown away thanks to a storming set.

The usual "why are these guys not massive?" question was easily answered on this occasion when they took the stage ... they are NOT an MTV friendly band in that they are predominantly large hairy blokes ... but they are a shit hot band.

Post set, I harangued one of the band to let me know who left the answer phone message at the end of the recorded version of "A Simple Process of Elimination" and why they hadn't played it live ... I also tried to get him to confirm they were playing the Connect festival in August and I think he said they were just to get rid of me !!! I did buy a T-shirt though !!!

The evening was rounded off with too many beers and falling asleep in the taxi on the way home !!!

Albums of 2020

2020 ... Some year the 2020 eh?  😒 'Nuff said about the year in general, I’m sure everyone's sick of it and the endless analysis th...